8th October 2018

Taylor and Fraser client, Ncn’ean Distillery, launches new botanical spirit

Back in March 2017 Taylor and Fraser completed the conversion of Ncn’ean Distillery in Drimnin, Oban, said to be Scotland’s first 100% organic distillery. We are delighted to hear that the company have recently launched the new Botanical Spirit, their first expression whilst their Scotch fully matures.

Described as “Not Whisky, not gin. Wild foraged. Triple Distilled.”, the new Botanical Spirit is made with a range of botanicals, including fresh grapefruit and locally foraged herbs including bog myrtle and heather, alongside coriander and juniper. The new make malt spirit is distilled twice at the Ncn’ean distillery before going to the west coast gin distillery, Beinn an Tuirc, for a third. It’s thanks to the experimentation of the team at Ncn’ean and the natural ingredients of the grounds around the distillery that this new make spirit was created.

We are proud to have played a part in the development of the new distillery which has led to their first creation of the Ncn’ean Botanical Spirit.

Taylor and Fraser were appointed as Principal Contractor to carry out the extensive conservation and redevelopment of existing steadings and associated services as well as new build warehouses, and boiler/ biomass building. The two maturation warehouses now house over 1000 barrels of maturing whisky. One of which is heated to use up the waste heat degenerated through the distilling process to enhance the already substantial green credentials.

Works also included associated hard landscaping and external works of the building. The conversion entailed the transformation of agricultural buildings into a small craft distillery, centred around the existing steading courtyard. The restoration of the steading included the removal of the existing roof structure, installation of the new portal within the existing steading footprint, new slate roof coverings, floor finishes and external windows and doors.

Due to the remote nature of the site, our project management team took the lead in resolving practical issues on site involving architectural, structural engineering and services. We proposed and agreed solutions with the relevant design team members. We were also able to re-cost the clients plans to provide added value, for example, the restoration of the old barn for the boiler.

The distillery is also committed to a sustainable approach. Believed to be the first organic whisky distillery in Scotland, its stills are powered with woodchip from a local forest and all by-products are used on the farm as feed or fertiliser.  It also provided heat for the distillation process by installing a biomass boiler to allow the burning of local timber.

Throughout the project, the team were cautious that the remote location posed unique challenges, and had to operate sensitively to reduce the impact on the surrounding environment and community.

Angus MacInnes, Construction Director at Taylor and Fraser said, “As with all our projects, we worked closely with the client to ensure the logistics of such a remote site worked, whilst keeping in mind the local community who shared the single-track roads with us. For example, this often meant we would coordinate deliveries around local tree logging activities and of course, we had a pragmatic approach to the accommodation of our team.”

We look forward to discovering more of the creations by Ncn’ean Distillery and wish them all the best for their future of distilling. You can find out more about our work on the Ncn’ean Distillery here.

Timelapse video by Ncn’ean Distillery

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